Blix lists disarmament tasks as US moves towards war

18 March 2003
Despite the failure of diplomacy and inspections in Iraq signalled by President Bush's ultimatum on 17 March and the evacuation of weapons inspectors to Cyprus the following day, Hans Blix continued his reporting to the Security Council. He produced an 83-page document detailing 12 key disarmament tasks Saddam Hussein needed to fulfil, which now seem destined to warn invading troops of the threats they might face, rather than provide the basis for a peaceful resolution of the conflict. France, Germany and Russia have requested that the Security Council meets to discuss the report on 19 March, but it was unclear how many members would attend. French Foreign Ministry spokesman Francois Rivasseau told reporters that the meeting would go ahead because 'it is important to respect international legality.' The 12 disarmament task listed by Blix are:

- Turn over any scud missiles and associated biological and chemical warheads or explain what happened to them

- Provide information on Al-Samoud missile technology and related projects, and present any remaining Fahad missiles

- Hand over all materials relating to missiles with a range of over 150 kilometres

- Hand over any remaining chemical and biological munitions, including rocket or missiles warheads, artillery shells and cluster munitions, and provide evidence relating to these programmes

- Provide information on any drones, and hand over any spray tanks or other devices that could be used to spread chemical or biological material

- Present any remaining VX nerve agent or provide evidence of its destruction

- Present any remaining mustard gas or evidence of its destruction

- Present any remaining sarin gas or evidence of its destruction

- Present any remaining anthrax or evidence of its destruction, and provide details on any work to dry anthrax

- Present any remaining stocks of botulinum toxin, complete production records since 1989, and evidence on the number of warheads filled with the toxin

- Present any stocks of undeclared biological warfare agents and information on work on the production of smallpox

- Present any banned chemical or biological agents, precursors, missiles, mobile and underground facilities for such weapons that have been since UN inspectors left Iraq in 1998

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